Day 1 – Thursday April 29, 2021
Arrive in Dover, the state capitol of Delaware, where you will begin your tour at the 18th Century John Dickinson Plantation. Learn about the life of John Dickinson, a signer of the U.S. Constitution. Historic interpreters dressed in period clothing will share the history of John Dickinson, his home Poplar Hall, and the beautiful grounds.
After the tour, you will travel to the luxurious Sheraton Wilmington South Hotel in New Castle Delaware, your home for the next 3-nights. Enjoy some leisure time before dinner this evening included.
Day 2 – Friday April 30, 2021
After an included breakfast buffet, you will be the special guests of Delaware’s Governor, when you visit Woodburn, the Governor’s Residence. Learn about this historic 1798 home, one of the finest Middle Period Georgian houses in Delaware, then stroll through its amazing gardens!
After the tour, you will get the chance to shop like a local at the beloved Willey Farms in Townsend, Delaware where you will find the finest produce, plants, specialty foods, and gift items.
Having worked up an appetite, the next stop is lunch at Cantwell’s Tavern in the historic town of Odessa, Delaware. This charming restaurant served as a hotel for 100 years in this once busy port town along the Appoquinimink Creek.
After lunch, you will travel north to Hockessin, Delaware to visit the natural gardens of Mt. Cuba Center. Located in the rolling hills of the Delaware Piedmont, the woodland gardens produce some of the most spectacular displays of wildflowers in the Mid-Atlantic region.
Return to your hotel. We will gather for dinner included this evening.
Day 3 – Saturday May 1st, 2021
After an included breakfast at the hotel, you will visit Hagley Museum, site of the original DuPont Company gunpowder mills, and original home of the du Pont family in America. You will be awed by the demonstrations of water-powered 19th Century machinery, and will learn how E.I. du Pont, founder of the DuPont Company considered himself a botanist. You’ll tour his home, the E. I. du Pont Garden, and the “First Office” of the DuPont Company. Following the tour, enjoy lunch with the Hagley horticulturalist, where you will learn more about the Hagley gardens and grounds, and get some tips for your own backyard garden!
After lunch, you will cross the Brandywine river to visit another du Pont property. The magnificent Nemours Estate was the home of Alfred I. du Pont. As you tour this opulent home, you will learn how this generation of the du Pont family lived and see examples of Alfred’s innovativeness and philanthropic nature. Move outside the mansion to see what may be the jewel of the estate, the formal French gardens – perhaps the finest in North America.
After a stop at the hotel to freshen up, you’ll travel to neighboring Kennett Square, Pennsylvania to visit Longwood Gardens, the former home of Pierre S. du Pont, and now one of the most influential gardens in the world, welcoming more than one million visitors a year. Larger than Central Park, the gardens, woodlands, meadow, and Conservatory is a dream-like destination. Enjoy dinner included in the café, then marvel at the spectacular fountain show after the sun sets.
Day 4 – Sunday May 2nd, 2021
After breakfast, you will visit one last du Pont family estate and garden before heading home. At Winterthur Museum, Garden & Library you will enjoy a garden tram tour, followed by a house tour. Once the home of Henry Francis du Pont, a renowned antiques collector and horticulturist, Winterthur houses the foremost collection of American Decorative Arts in the world. There’s still time for the gift shop and lunch in the Pavilion Restaurant.
After lunch, depart for home with wonderful memories of your visit to Delaware and plenty of new ideas for your garden!